Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Salmon Pink

Olive oil and lemon marinated Salmon

DSC_4772Here in Portland, Oregon, the summer is mostly glorious! Although the temperature seldom reaches 100 degrees with minimum humidity, some evenings we opt out to make a no-heat, nice, light, A.K.A.appetizer for our dinner.

Not sure where I got the recipe…the marinated salmon on toasted French baguette we love, however, bread is optional, simply put it on the sliced cucumber for gluten free and less calorie version.

Ingredients and Instruction for marinating salmon (Print Recipe Here)DSC_4765

  • Medium size onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 Tablespoons  white wine vinegar 
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • Salmon – sashimi grade thinly sliced (I used about 1/3 pound)
  • 1 lemon, washed well, cut lengthwise fist then thinly sliced
  • 1-2 fresh dill stems, chopped
  1. Put thinly sliced onion in the bowl and sprinkle with salt and mix well, let sit for 5 minutes. Squeeze the juice out. Set aside.DSC_4767
  2. Combine olive oil, wine vinegar, salt and sugar well in a small bowl. Set aside.DSC_4769
  3. Place prepared onion evenly distributed in a shallow glass dish with rim,
  4. Single layer the salmon on top of the onion, sliced lemon on top of salmon. Stir the olive oil mixture before pouring over the salmon. Scatter the dill on top. Cover with plastic wrap.Chill for at least 3 hours or overnight.DSC_4774
  5. Serve with sliced baguette, crackers or cucumber.IMG_1588

Gifts from friends – Home grown Kale is sheer beauty! IMG_1617

Then I received handmade cards by Jalna in the mail. I was touched. Too beautiful to let go…can I just keep them in a keepsake box?IMG_1626

The table my husband was working on was finally stained (antique red)!IMG_1621
The painting was done by moi, My son-in-law made the vase.

Miss-happening occurred playing basket ball the other day…seriously? My husband spent a few days in the horizontal position.IMG_1618

He must get better fast! We’re ready to go to Japan soon…  

See you in a few weeks!

PS – I greatly appreciate you all for visiting my blog. 

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Curry Noodle Soup

With Spicy Curry Oil

DSC_4827While watching the Japanese television showSmap x Smap’ which I downloaded from the network, I saw that one of the teams made a  curry noodle soup dish that looked scrumptious! Suddenly I was craving fat noodles – udon.

Although I was not able to find the exact recipe, I toyed with it and came up with a recipe that I think is acceptable. A few drops of curry oil enhanced the flavor so make the oil first.

Ingredients for Spicy Curry Oil yield approximately 1/2 cup

  • 3 Tablespoons curry powder
  • 200cc Olive oil
  • 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed with the flat side of a knife
  • 1x1 inch cube of ginger root peeled and sliced
  • 1 dried Japanese red hot pepper (optional), seeds removed and slice the pod. Note: if you like spicy, use more.DSC_4793
  1. Put curry powder in small pot. Dry sauté the curry powder at low heat until fragrant  –do not burn.
  2. Pour oil in, add garlic, ginger and red pepper if using then simmer on low heat for10 minutes. Turn off heat and cool in pan.DSC_4797
  3. Set a sieve lined with paper towel on top of bowl,  strain the oil.DSC_4800DSC_4802

Ingredients and Instruction for Curry Noodle Soup for 2-4 servings (Print Recipe Here)

  • 1/2 of large onion thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • 1/2 pound of thinly sliced beef (sukiyaki style), cut into 2 inch length
  • 6 cups water –  add less water if you like thick soup
  • 2-4 (50g to100g) curry roux block
  • 150cc mentsuyu sauce (I used Zarusoba Straight as it has no MSG)IMG_1598
  • 1 packet (1 tablespoon) of bonito no-MSG dashi powderIMG_1599
  • Frozen udon noodle –1 bundle per person
  • 1-2 stalk of green onion thinly sliced
  1. Heat oil in large pot at medium low heat, put onion in and sauté until transparent
  2. Add beef and continue cooking till the beef is no longer pink.DSC_4812
  3. Pour water and mentsuyu sauce in and cook until boil, simmer for 10 minutes at low heat. Scoop out if white scum appears on top.DSC_4813
  4. Mean while cook udon noodle with plenty of hot water. Drain the water through colander. Divide noodle in individual bowls. Note: Frozen udon noodle is already fully cooked, just warm it up.DSC_4819
  5. When the meat and onion are tender, dissolve curry roux blocks and bonito powder. Adjust flavoring to suit your taste. Pour the soup over the noodle, garnish with green onion and serve hot with the curry oil on the side.DSC_4838

Grilled pineapple with curry oil is an exquisite flavor combination. I’m sure you can find other uses for curry oil.DSC_4818DSC_4833


We had a overnight guest from Utah. He and his family used to live in a neighboring town, one of his daughters baby sat my son a couple of decades ago…he call my son ‘Merwin’ just to tease him…on his way to Newport, Oregon for fishing. His remarkable efforts to organize and raise funds for autistic children is commendable. Click here for more information. IMG_1592

I feel some sadness seeing this beautiful sunset. I know the summer is fleeting fast. I’m not ready for the summer to end.IMG_1584

…..I suppose I could prepare to welcome the romantic Autumn?

Have a wonderful week!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014


Grilled Fresh Figs

DSC_4760Figs were ripe when we came back from the trip. They are overripe in fact…the weight of the fruits were too great so that the branches broke off. Where have you been? We were ready for you a week ago…DSC_4746

I figured out quickly what I should do with them. I called to my husband; ‘Honey, Turn-up the grill’ ‘ We need to smoke’em! I said figuratively.

Grilled fresh figs for ice cream (adapted from Fine Cooking magazine) (Print Recipe here)

Necessary equipment: barbeque grill

  • Figs – 10 to12, the magazine recommended Black Mission Figs, we used Desert King, stemmed and halved lengthwise Note: we only grilled 6 figs. DSC_4737
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1-2 Tablespoons aged balsamic vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • Vanilla ice cream
  • 2-3 Tablespoons honey
  • 4-5 mint leaves, thinly sliced (optional)
  1. Heat up - a gas grill to medium low or prepare a low charcoal fire.
  2. Brush - set the figs cut side down and brush the rounded side with oil. Flip and brush the cut side with the balsamic vinegar.
  3. Mix - Sugar and chopped thyme in a small bowl. Sprinkle over the figs.DSC_4743
  4. Grill - set figs on grill cut side facing up. Cover the grill and cook until the sugary tops start to bubble and the bottom of the figs get light grill marks. 5-8 minutes.DSC_4755
  5. Serve immediately over scoops of ice cream, drizzled with honey and sprinkle with mint if using.DSC_4761

We’re blessed to be able to vacation in Hawaii. To see our two gorgeous grandkids then to visit fascinating Big Island, the money was well spent.

Akaka Fall has a nice trail.  Azuki special at Matsumoto Shave Ice

Sanseis signature Apple Tart. Ships ahoy to snorkeling tour!IMG_1559IMG_1044

The sprawling, mega hotel has it’s own monorail inside of the hotel. From main lobby to our room was about 10 minutes by foot. By tram also takes 10 minutes, because our compound is 3 stops away.
Flavorful Acai bowl from Tropical Frozen Yogurt in Kona.   
A petite French patisserie in Hilo with few selection of sweets. The store closes at 4 pm!, we managed to squeeze inside by 3:57pm.  
The Donkey Ball Chocolatier in Kainaliu, I like the silly name.
The original King Kamehameha statue in Hawi, my husband taking photos in heavy rain.
Historical Bamboos lilikoi cheese cake. Donkey crossing sign reminded us of the kangaroo crossing signs in Australia. 
See my nice tan?IMG_1089Hawi doing there?…it’s all rain, can’t see the black sand beach.IMG_1566The wooden poster hung in little café in Hawi gave me a chuckle!IMG_1561Sunset at Volcano National ParkIMG_1533A spectacular night view of volcanoIMG_1038I saw this sign in Hwy.19 on the way to Hilo.IMG_1501

I hope you’re enjoying the summer…Oh hi Chelsea! the next door neighbor’s cat was under my feet while we were grilling figs outside…missed me? DSC_4749Yeah?…me too.